Bruce Springsteen - The Times They Are A-Changin' (1997 Kennedy Center Honors)

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The Times They Are A-Changin' (Bob Dylan Tribute) - Bruce Springsteen - 1997 Kennedy Center Honors

Bob Dylan was awarded the 2016 Nobel Prize In Literature early this morning, and to honor one of his heroes, Bruce Springsteen published an excerpt of his new memoir Born To Run that references Dylan as the “father of my country.” Springsteen talks about how complex and honest Dylan’s lyrics sounded to a kid growing up in working class America, and highlights Highway 61 Revisited and Bringing It All Back Home as two favorite albums. Read the excerpt below.

Bob Dylan is the father of my country. Highway 61 Revisited and Bringing It All Back Home were not only great records, but they were the first time I can remember being exposed to a truthful vision of the place I lived. The darkness and light were all there, the veil of illusion and deception ripped aside. He put his boot on the stultifying politeness and daily routine that covered corruption and decay. The world he described was all on view, in my little town, and spread out over the television that beamed into our isolated homes, but it went uncommented on and silently tolerated. He inspired me and gave me hope. He asked the questions everyone else was too frightened to ask, especially to a fifteen-year-old: “How does it feel… to be on your own?” A seismic gap had opened up between generations and you suddenly felt orphaned, abandoned amid the flow of history, your compass spinning, internally homeless. Bob pointed true north and served as a beacon to assist you in making your way through the new wilderness America had become. He planted a flag, wrote the songs, sang the words that were essential to the times, to the emotional and spiritual survival of so many young Americans at that moment.

I had the opportunity to sing “The Times They Are A-Changin’?” for Bob when he received the Kennedy Center Honors. We were alone together for a brief moment walking down a back stairwell when he thanked me for being there and said, “If there’s anything I can ever do for you…” I thought, “Are you kidding me?” and answered, “It’s already been done.”

Watch Springsteen perform “The Times They Are A-Changin'” for Dylan


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Artist: Bruce Springsteen
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